Penis pumps are a means of combating erectile dysfunction without having to resort to medication or surgery.
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is among the most common sex-related problems men of all ages face. Although commonly affecting men in their 40s, ED can occur at any age. It may also be linked to other medical conditions.
It is manifested as an inability to achieve as well as maintain an erection required to engage in sexual intercourse. Erectile dysfunction may occur for various reasons. These are commonly low testosterone levels, blood flow or nerve function problems, or as a side-effect of prostate surgery. What are your options if you’re suffering from ED?
Common treatments for this condition include oral medications, penile surgery, as well as more invasive methods. If you’re not keen on taking medication or it proves ineffective, and if you shudder at the thought of injecting alprostadil into your penis, a pump might be your best option.
The device is also termed a vacuum erection device (VED), a vacuum constriction device (VCD), or simply a vacuum penile pump. It consists of three parts — a plastic cylinder, a pump, and a constriction ring.
Despite there being several kinds, all penis pumps function the same. The plastic cylinder is carefully placed over the penis, and a hand pump (or a battery-powered one) is used to create a vacuum. This forces blood to flow into the organ, gradually making it erect. The cylinder is then removed, while the constriction ring remains at the base of the penis. It prevents blood from flowing out of it, Like a cock ring, Thus helping maintain the erection.
What Do Penis Pumps Do?
Despite what most men think, the main use of VEDs isn’t penis enlargement. One of the most common misconceptions regarding these pumps is that they help make it bigger. However, that may not be entirely true.
Put simply, vacuum constriction devices are primarily used to achieve and maintain a bigger and stronger erection. In that sense, they do technically make the penis bigger but only temporarily. With a little practice and correct continual use, they will lead to more powerful erections. Still, you are much more likely to experience an increase in girth rather than in length.
In other words, penis pumps enlarge and strengthen the erection by pumping blood into the tissue and head of the penis.
The tube goes over the shaft, making an air-tight seal. It is highly recommended to shave the area near the base of the penis. This facilitates the creation of the vacuum. Additionally, you should also apply lube to the bottom of the cylinder as well as your penis.
Next, use the battery-powered or hand pump to create suction and send blood into your organ. But be careful not to overdo it. Should you feel any discomfort or pain during the process, immediately stop pumping. Note that the penis will become slightly more sensitive. Therefore, it is best to practice a few times before engaging in sexual activity to get used to the sensation and achieve the best results.
Why Opt for a Penis Pump Instead of Other Methods?
As we’ve mentioned, penile vacuum pumps are just one of many methods a man can use to overcome ED. They can be used in conjunction with oral medication, such as Viagra and Cialis, and are both perfectly safe and extremely effective. In our opinion, you should always give VED a shot, prior to considering riskier, more invasive methods such as penile injections and plastic surgery (penile implants).
These treatments may cause unwanted side effects, meaning a penis pump is a lot safer alternative. Other reasons to choose a pump include:
- Penis Pumps Work — With regular use, most men will be able to maintain an erection for sufficient periods of time.
- They are less risky than other ED treatments — They pose less risk than other methods when used correctly. It’s vital to stick to the instructions and refrain from “over-pumping.”
- They’re noninvasive — If you’re suffering from ED or have trouble maintaining an erection for longer periods of time, you should always try a penis pump before opting for more invasive methods.
- You can use them with oral medication — Although we don’t suggest using a pump if you’ve had a penis implant or are shooting alprostadil injections, there’s no reason not to use them together with oral medication.
- They are much more affordable — Surely, we don’t need to highlight the fact that surgical methods and injections, as treatments for ED, are rather expensive. After purchasing a penis pump, this method is far more budget-friendly than all other alternatives.
- They might help you regain normal erectile function — Following a prostate surgery or radiation therapy in case of prostate cancer, continual use of a pump might help you regain the ability to get a natural erection.
How Do Penis Pumps Work?
Penis pumps are, at their core, just suction cups that stimulate the blood flow to your penis. In that sense, they are remarkably easy to use. There are two main types of VEDs — those with a hand pump and the ones with a battery. Both have their ups and downs, so to speak. Battery-powered ones practically do all the work for you. Hand pumps, however, allow you to manually adjust the pressure, giving you more control.
Additionally, these pumps come with or without a constriction ring. The purpose of this rubber ring is to keep the blood from leaving your penis. Utilizing the constriction ring may feel a bit awkward at first. However, it will help you stay erect for longer periods of time.
One thing to be aware of if you choose the hand-pump device is that you will need to assemble it first. You must first connect the tube of the pump to the cylinder before the VED is ready for use. There is some resistance when putting the two pieces together. This is why some people opt to lube up the two parts. However, we would advise against this. Although it will be easier to assemble the pieces, it will, in turn, make the tube easier to slip off.
Steps You Should Follow When Using a Penis Pump:
- Although not strictly necessary, it might help to trim the pubes at the base of your penis to ensure a tighter fit. This will make it easier to create a vacuum.
- Insert your penis into the cylinder and press the plastic tube against your skin, making sure that there are no air pockets.
- Slowly start pumping to create the vacuum and send blood to your penis. Continue pumping until you’re fully erect but stop as soon as you feel you’ve reached your limit or if you start experiencing any discomfort.
- Once you’re fully erect, place a rubber constriction ring around the base. Then, gently remove the plastic tube, and you’re good to go.
Choosing the Right Penis Pump
As you’ve probably guessed, penis pumps vary in size. Choosing the correct pump size is crucial, both to avoid injury and ensure maximum effectiveness. In other words, you have to be honest with yourself.
Choosing a pump that’s too large will likely apply too much pressure. This will not have the desired effect, and over-pumping may cause permanent damage. Conversely, if a cylinder is too small, it will fail to create enough pressure, so you won’t see any significant difference in your erection size.
Moreover, you can also use a penis pump cushion or a sleeve. Pressing the plastic cylinder to your skin isn’t the most comfortable feeling. Plus, pressing it too hard may cause bruising, making all subsequent uses somewhat painful. A cushion will alleviate potential discomfort and make the whole experience easier to endure.
Who Can Use a Penis Pump?
The biggest misconception related to penis pumps is that only older men use them. This cannot be further from the truth. In fact, many men use VEDs for a variety of reasons. It’s just that men in their forties suffer from erectile dysfunction more often. However, as we’ve mentioned, ED and inability to sustain an erection may be linked to other medical conditions, including diabetes and multiple sclerosis.
Another reason why men might opt to use a penile pump is to combat the psychological effects of ED or if they believe their penis isn’t large enough to satisfy their partner. Although penis pumps won’t lead to permanent penis growth, they do make the erection larger and more powerful, which might be what some men need to fully enjoy sexual intercourse.
In other words, men of all ages can use a vacuum erection device to boost their erection. In fact, some people use it as foreplay. That said, as simple and straightforward as VEDs may be, it’s still necessary to utilize them correctly. What we mean by this is that you should only use the pump two to three times a week and for a maximum of 15 minutes per session. Also, give your penis time to grow between each pump. Wait for it to stop expanding between subsequent pumps.
Pumping too vigorously or too often may cause injuries like sore spots, skin discoloration, blisters, or even numbness. Furthermore, there are some risks and potential side effects associated with VEDs, which you should be aware of before you opt to buy one.
Risks and Side Effects
Risks and unwanted side effects related to using a penis pump may include the following:
- Pain and bruising — As we’ve mentioned, incorrect or overly frequent use of a pump may lead to painful injuries of the penis and bruising. We can’t stress this enough — no matter what, don’t overdo it.
- Petechiae — Seldom, penis pumps may cause blood vessels to burst. This manifests as small red dots under the skin. If you notice this, decrease the pumping frequency. If the issue persists, refrain from further use.
- Numbness and skin discoloration — This typically occurs when the constriction ring is too tight. In this case, stop using the pump until the numbness subsides and get a larger ring to avoid the issue in the future.
- Painful ejaculations or feeling your semen is “trapped” — You can alleviate this with a cutout of the constriction ring.
- Psychological effects and awkwardness — some men might feel extremely awkward having to use this aid before sex. However, ED is a medical condition, and so you shouldn’t feel embarrassed about using a penile pump. Still, we strongly suggest discussing it with your partner before buying one.
However, in some instances, VEDs are a no-go. As the device pumps blood into the penis, you should not use it if you’re on blood-thinning medications or have an increased risk of bleeding. Likewise, if you suffer from sickle cell anemia or a blood disorder of any kind, penis pumps are not a good idea. You should always consult your doctor and notify them of any medical conditions and medication you’re taking to avoid any unpleasant surprises.
Should You Use a Penis Pump?
If you've watched a male stripper saga starring Channing Tatum, Magic Mike, you must remember the scene where Joe Manganiello, aka Big Dick Richie, is getting ready for the show.
In order to stay true to his stage name, Richie always performs a routine that helps him maintain his boastful front. Before every show, Richie "boosts" his most valuable asset using — you've guessed it — a penis pump.
As it turns out, this male stripper preparation ritual is not just a figment of the director's imagination put there simply for shock value. In an interview for MTV, the star of the show, Channing Tatum himself, has revealed that this practice is something that he actually witnessed in his four-month stripper stint when he was still an impressionable 19-year-old. He decided to contribute this trick of the trade to the movie to make it more realistic.
This is to say that not only people with erectile dysfunction or older men who’ve undergone prostate surgery use penis pumps. Even if you’re in top form and have no trouble getting in the mood, you can still leverage this useful device to prop yourself up.